This essay draws on insights taken from Lacanian psychoanalysis to rethink and resituate notions of the self and subjectivity within the theory and practice of experiential leadership development. Adopting an auto-ethnographic approach, it describes the author’s own experience as a participant in a programme of equine assisted learning or ‘horse whispering’ and considers the consequences of human-animal interactions as a tool for self-development and improvement. Through an analysis of this human/animal interaction, the essay presents and applies three Lacanian concepts of subjectivity, desire and fantasy and considers their form and function in determining the often fractured relationship between self and other that characterises leader-follower relations.
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- Department of Management - Senior Lecturer
- Huddersfield Business School
- Centre for Sustainability, Responsibility, Governance and Ethics - Member